Explore The Giving Tradition Exhibit


The rare book collection of a research university nearly two centuries old is the product of many hands and minds. Scholar-librarians, zealous collectors, dedicated faculty, and generous donors have all played key parts in creating Case Western Reserve University’s special collections. The Giving Tradition highlights the stories of a wide variety of individuals and organizations whose books and documents have come together across time and location to form much of the Kelvin Smith Library rare book collection.

The Giving Tradition is an exhibit on display in the Hatch Reading Room of Kelvin Smith Library at Case Western Reserve University from June 12 to September 14, 2014. This web exhibit explores some of the elements of the exhibit in more depth, and includes items that were left out of the physical exhibit due to space constraints.


Exhibit curated by Eleanor Blackman, Helen Conger, and Jill Tatem, with assistance from Sharlane Gubkin, Melissa Hubbard, and Rachel McPherson.


Theodore Litchfield Bailey: Thoreau Collection

Items from the Thoreau collection of Theodore Litchfield Bailey, Case Western Reserve University, Kelvin Smith Library

Leland Schubert: Theater Book Collection

Items from the Cleveland Play House/Leland Schubert Theater Book Collection, Case Western Reserve University, Kelvin Smith Library

Jared Potter Kirtland: Natural History Collection

Items from the Jared Potter Kirtland Collection, Case Western Reserve University, Kelvin Smith Library

Newton D. Baker: Reading Library

Items from the Newton D. Baker Library, Case Western Reserve University Kelvin Smith Library

Student Collectors: Literary Society Libraries and Cuban Artists' Books

Items from Western Reserve College's 19th century student literary societies and from Case Western Reserve University's students in The Cuban Experience class in 2012.

Robert H. Jackson: The Comic History of England

Images from the first edition of The Comic History of England, donated by Robert H. and Donna L. Jackson.

Tom Slavin: Carthusian Antiphonary

Images from a Carthusian Antiphonary printed in 1612, donated by Tom Slavin.

Henry R. Hatch, III: Carmelite Missal

Images from a Carmelite Missal printed in 1500, donated by Henry R. Hatch, III.

Kelvin Smith Library Bookplate Collection

Highlights from the Bookplate Collection in the Kelvin Smith Library.

Kelvin Smith Library Fantasy and Science Fiction Collections

Cover Art from the Fantasy and Science Fiction Collections in the Kelvin Smith Library